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Delving into The Drone Industry – Colin Snow, Drone Analyst

Looking for accurate, actionable data on the drone industry to base your business decisions?

Colin Snow is CEO and Founder of Drone Analyst Research and Advisors, a consulting firm for the commercial unmanned aerial systems (UAS) industry. Colin is a 25 year technology industry veteran with a background in market research, enterprise software, electronics, digital imaging, and mobility. His experience includes aerial photography as well as making, programming, and piloting remote control aircraft.  In this episode, Colin talks about the trends in the drone industry, the services available through Drone Analyst and what we might see in the future as commercialization of the drone industry continues.

In This Episode

  • [01:36] Introduction to Colin Snow
  • [02:05] Drone Analyst – Colin started Drone Analyst in 2012 to inform clients on the trends in the commercial industry. The target audience serves the buyers of drone technologies, the suppliers and service providers and the investor community.
  • [02:51] Research Services – Drone Analyst covers the entire ecosystem for the civilian unmanned industry. Products are packaged and available via the company’s website.
  • [04:18] Client Profile – A wide variety of individuals use Drone Analyst ranging from large camera manufacturers that need to understand the industry trends to the individuals that are thinking about starting a drone service and need to understand where the opportunities lie.
  • [05:04] Consulting Services – Drone Analyst provides strategic assessments or portfolio analysis to help companies understand how a drone service might fit into their operations.
  • [05:31] Content Services – Drone Analysts provides white papers, webcasts and digital media to help companies engage customers.
  • [06:27] The Drone Industry – Colin discusses the challenges of quantifying a new industry when there are no standard way to define the primary or secondary businesses that are involved in drone related services or products.
  • [10:37] Forecasting the Economic Impacts of the Drone Industry – Because there is no standard way to classify drone related companies, it is a challenge to develop economic forecasts of the industry as a whole.
  • [11:36]The U.S. Market – The U.S. Market lags behind many other nations, because commercialization in the U.S. is only about 1 year old.
  • [12:26] Industry Trends – Colin discusses a key industry trend that sees most of the drone activity forming around 5 key areas – farming & agriculture; inspection & monitoring; mapping & surveying; film, photo & video; and public safety.
  • [13:15] Market Rankings – Of the five major sectors mentioned by Colin, the film, photo and video sector has the largest market.
  • [16:54] Visual Line of Sight – Colin discusses how eliminating visual line of sight would be a windfall for some manufactures as they rush to produce longer flying machines and that the inspection & monitoring and mapping & surveying sectors would benefit most.
  • [18:40] Data Surprises – Colin describes how the data reveals a shadow market of individuals operating small commercial businesses without an exemption.
  • [20:03] Drone Supply and Demand – While there has been a surge in drone sales, its too early to define the relationship between supply and demand. Drone Analyst is working with Biz Media on a study to evaluate supply and demand dynamics as well as where consumers are
  • buying their drones.
  • [21:27] Job Opportunities in the Drone Industry – Colin identifies five skills to be successful in the drone industry – video, mapping, photogrammetry, LIDAR and spectral imaging.
  • [25:35] Trends Shaping the Future – Colin dicusses some of the major trends in the drone industry is the desire for high resolution in the data, which means a growing demand for manufactures to produce better sensors, cameras, on board processers. There is also a growing demand for mobility enabled services – applications that will work on mobile devices.
  • [28:03] Impact of FAA Part 107 Rules – Colin believes that Part 107 Rules will reduce the barrier to entry into the drone industry, which will create a downward price pressure in the drone service providers market. Drone operators will need to respond by enhancing their skills and positioning themselves best in the market.
  • [29:48] Final Comments – Drone Analyst has the years of expertise, experience and contributors/advisors to ensure clients are best served.

Mentioned Links

Drone Industry expert, Colin Snow, Drone Analyst flying a camera drone.
Colin Snow of Drone Analyst flying a camera drone.
Drone industry experit, Colin Snow of Drone Analyst
Colin Snow of Drone Analyst

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